Fostering Better Communication

By providing a platform for the sharing of information, resources, communication and experiences of those living their final days fully, the vision of Life Matters Media is to create a community for ones facing the end of life and for those that care for them. Ultimately, we seek to foster a greater understanding of the capacity that end of life decisions have to nurture the human spirit.


Personal narratives of challenges, decisions and triumphs.

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Clear, concise analysis of research impacting you and your family.

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Columnists provide multi-disciplinary expertise to help you plan ahead.

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One-stop, comprehensive aggregate of end of life issues in the media.

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President’s Report

Dear Friends,

There are many exciting happenings to share, but first I wanted to say thanks to the many of you in attendance at last week’s Interfaith Forum. If you missed it and would like to hear from six faith perspectives on end of life care, we are happy to provide the following link to a video of the panel. You can also hear from some of our panelists in an insightful Chicago Public Radio segment

Watch it here:

Onward to Harold Washington Library! Tuesday, March 31st, Mary and I will appear on stage at the Pritzker Auditorium with our friend Rick KoganChicago Tribune columnist and WGN Radio host in our presentation, “Starting the Conversation.”

At the library, we will begin a dialogue about the reasons that end of life decisions are so imperative to discuss, address common barriers that many of us face, and identify our own values and goals essential to understanding and communicating care preferences.

Rick, a friend to the Chicago Public Library and to Life Matters Media, will take the stage and have his own “conversation” that evening. It is our hope that in watching this process unfold, all attendees will better understand what’s important when addressing these issues with loved ones and medical providers. No registration is required, but if you’re coming- let us know! Send us a tweet: @LifeMMedia or an email, Here is more information:

Learn more here:
Learn about CPL:

Tomorrow, we will be “Starting the Conversation” in the northern suburbs at Cancer Wellness Center. We invite you to join us for our first session with our new partners at this wonderful facility. Registration is required, so for more information head here:

This week online, we introduced a new expert column from our friends at Respecting Choices in LaCrosse, Wisconsin. Ethicist Thomas Harter will be discussing advance care planning through the lens of this successful and now globally recognized program; a values-based paradigm designed to align actual care with individual treatment goals.

Please take a look at Dr. Harter’s new page:

Friday, I was fortunate to attend the Institute of Medicine’s National Action Conference on End of Life Care. Health and policy experts from across the country convened at the National Academy of Sciences to discuss implementation strategies of the IOM’s seminal fall report and recommendations, Dying in America. Here’s my write up in Reuters Health:

Thanks, as always, for your support. We hope to see you in the coming week!


Randi Belisomo
President and Co-Founder

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Life Matters Media’s Mission

Life Matters Media aims to be the premiere provider of information, resources and support for all involved in end of life decision-making. Through fostering better communication, we will empower the ill, aged, caregivers, surrogates and medical providers to navigate this life phase with confidence and dignity.

Life Matters Media’s Values

  • All individuals should have the ability to participate in decisions that affect their destinies.
  • Multiple and varied voices create a richer and more productive marketplace for the exchange of information.
  • A broad range of choices surrounding end of life issues exists. These choices should be considered carefully.
  • Neutral platforms are best to explore this journey and bring end of life issues to the forefront in a reflective forum.

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Life Matters Media is a 501(c)(3) organization. We are grateful for your support in our mission.



What’s New

640px-HippocraticOathWords Matter: Physician Assisted Suicide Is NOT Physician Aid In Dying By Susan M. Mathews

The classic Hippocratic Oath, translated by Heinrich Von Staden, requires a new physician to swear to the following oath:

And I will use regimens for the benefit of the ill in accordance with my ability and my judgment, but from [what is] to their harm or injustice I will keep [them]. And, I will not give a drug that is deadly to anyone if asked [for it], nor will I suggest the way to such a counsel.

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HARTERAdvance Care Planning: About Much More Than Autonomy By Tom Harter

Undoubtedly, the bioethical concept of “respect for patient autonomy” plays a vital role in the justification of advance care planning –  the process of considering, communicating and documenting end of life care preferences. Respect is a pillar that supports us in our ability to plan and direct future care, communicate treatment preferences with tools like advance directives, and have preferences followed by surrogate decision-makers and medical providers.

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Medtronic--Dr. Dzau--arranged by Cynthia HotvedtReimburse Doctors For Helping Patients Plan End Of Life Care, Experts Say By Randi Belisomo

Physician incentives are needed to improve end of life care in the U.S., health experts said Friday at an Institute of Medicine (IOM) forum.

The forum convened at the National Academy of Sciences to discuss action on the recommendations of the IOM’s seminal fall report, Dying in America.

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LMM_event005Interfaith Panel Explores End Of Life Care Beliefs By Daniel Gaitan

Six Chicago-area faith leaders addressed the importance of end of life decision-making and discussed how their respective beliefs, rituals and traditions impact the process during an event this week at Northwestern University.

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MARGOLISLife Matters Media On Reddit: AMA LMM to facilitate “AMA” sessions on Reddit with notable end of life care experts. On March 24, Dr. Ben Margolis, founder and director of Autopsy Center of Chicago, answered questions from Reddit users about his work and experiences helping families determine their loved one's cause of death.

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Featured News

“What We Hold Central: An Interfaith Discussion of Religious and Moral Perspectives at the End of Life” was presented to a live audience gathered at Northwestern University on March 19.
StoryCorps Chicago: Talking About Death
Randi Belisomo and Loyola Bioethics Institute's Mark Kuczewski Discuss Study Findings Regarding Medical Students' Concerns about Becoming Desensitized to Dying Patients

Our Stories

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Life Matters Newswire

03/23/2015 - Reimburse Doctors For Helping Patients Plan End Of Life Care, Experts Say

This piece was first published in Reuters Health. President Randi Belisomo is a contributor. Physician incentives are needed to improve end of life care in the U.S., health…

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03/21/2015 - Interfaith Panel Explores End Of Life Care Beliefs

Six Chicago-area faith leaders addressed the importance of end of life decision-making and discussed how their respective beliefs, rituals and traditions impact the process during an event…

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03/13/2015 - Fearing Lawsuits, Some Physicians Provide Unwanted Medical Treatments To Seriously Ill Patients

Physician decision-making is often tinged with concern for legal liability, causing some doctors to provide unwanted, often futile, medical treatments to patients nearing…

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